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WinLab Reviews
Cirque Input Center
Keyboard Offers an Extra Touch

-- by Jim Forbes

I'm hard on keyboards, and picky to boot. Sometimes my hunt for the right input device feels like the search for the Holy Grail. But I've finally found a keyboard that suits my needs: the Cirque Input Center.

It has a wonderful feel and when I'm writing, it keeps my hands where they belong-on the keyboard. This 104-key keyboard incorporates a new version of Cirque's GlidePoint cursor-control device, adapted for Windows 95. (I initially kept hitting the trackpad by mistake, but fixed the problem by adjusting the keyboard's angle.) Plug one of the dual connectors on its cable to the keyboard port, the other to the mouse port. Cirque supplies adapters for different port types to facilitate this process.

Cirque also includes a metal stylus with the Input Center. You can use it to trace your signature on the trackpad, then cut and paste it into documents.

Bundled software allows you to adjust cursor tracking and other attributes of the Input Center.

The attached palm rest takes up a bit too much desk space. The trackpad is located on the right-hand side of the keyboard's palm rest, so you don't move your hands to employ it. You can activate Windows 95 commands by making a combination of taps and gestures on the upper right-hand portion of the trackpad.

I'm impressed with the Input Center's feel and with the GlidePoint's durability. Both go a long way toward making the five or so hours I spend a day on my computer a lot less frustrating.

W Info File

Cirque Input Center
Price: $129.95
Pros: Great tactile feel; Windows 95 and function keys; integrated GlidePoint input device
Cons: Large; requires precise hand position
Cirque Corp.
800-GLIDE-75, 801-467-1100
WinMag Box Score: 3.5

Copyright 1997 CMP Media Inc.

(From Windows Magazine, January 1997, page 145.)